why do people die of old age

There are various ways of shuffling off this mortal coil, but people actually die from injury (such as a fall or car accident) or disease (such as cancer). No one dies of old age. Usually when a person is said to have died of old age, it means that he or she succumbed to one of the diseases common in our later years. While many older people do suffer from health problems, disease does not automatically accompany aging, and seniors are living longer and healthier than ever. Just as youth does not guarantee, old age does not guarantee poor health.

It is true that living cells have a finite life span, but that doesn t mean that the organism simply dies because the cells are old. Instead, genetic mutations, diseases, and damaging effects of the environment can foster a specific
or disease. As people get older, their cells simply don t work as well, and can t stave off disease as easily or heal as well as they once could. As a result, older people may die from injuries or diseases that a younger person would easily survive. But nothing dies from simply being old. Follow Life s Little Mysteries on Twitter @.

We re also on. Some people die like that, too. The trouble is there's not a good name for it. Is there a single problem that gets the final chain of events going? Or should old age under some circumstances be considered an actual cause of death, equal to lung cancer, leukemia and diabetes? Those questions are becoming increasingly important as more and more people die at very advanced ages without an obvious cause that can be confidently entered on the death certificate. The difficulty of naming a cause of death in the very old is becoming enough of a problem in the industrialized world that the World Health Organization is likely to address it head-on it in the next year.

If we can't find a way of dealing with this, then I think mortality statistics will lose much of their value, said Lars Age Johansson, who chairs the WHO's Mortality Reference Group and is a biostatistician with Sweden's National Board of Health and Welfare. I see this as very, very important. Mortality statistics are the backbone of public health.

Without knowing how the members of a population die, and at what ages, epidemiologists can only guess how many deaths are potentially preventable. On the other hand, good mortality data can identify overlooked problems and help public health agencies decide where to direct effort and money. The issue is especially topical because experts from around the world next year will start updating the International Classification of Diseases, medicine's official list of more than 14,000 diagnoses. Each revision of the ICD is the right moment to reconsider this question, said Gerard Pavillon, a French biostatistician who will co-lead the mortality statistics committee.

The official list of causes Some places began recording all deaths and their causes in the early 1800s. The original list, called the International List of Causes of Death, was adopted in 1893. It had 161 headings, with more specific causes falling under some of them. It was probably easier for a physician to choose a cause of death then than it is now, though far more is known about the complicated physiology of dying.